“The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket,” a classic gothic sea novel, is Edgar Allan Poe's only novel, viewed by many as his greatest work. Poe found the beginnings of this story in 1836, while reading a newspaper account in 1836 of a shipwreck and subsequent rescue of two men on board. Published in 1838, this rousing sea adventure follows a New England boy, Pym, who stows away on a whaling ship with its captain's son, Augustus. The two boys, who find themselves repeatedly on the brink of discovery or death, witness many hair-raising events, including mutiny, savagery, cannibalism, and frantic pursuits. It was Poe's unique genius, however, that he imbued the deliberately popular tale with such allegorical richness that discerning readers have been intrigued ever since and his literary successors have employed his motifs. With its rich use of biblical imagery and psychological insights, Poe's masterpiece has resonated throughout subsequent literary history, influencing major works by Melville, Verne, James, Nabokov, and others.